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post #1 of (permalink) Old 12-09-2001, 07:03 PM
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One piece AMC 20 tough enough?

Time for me to think about my rear axle. I have a stock AMC 20 behind a Chevy 350 and NV4500. I think it has 410's.
I plan on running 33-35 inch tires and a locker of some kind.
I am considering the Tomken coil conversion that would include an axle truss. Would that help?
I don't need a competition rock-crawler but would like a rugged trail rig.
I will be using it in the western deserts and mountains.

My first inclination is to build up the M20, but not if I'm likely to be wasting money on something that will break.
I wonder if it would be worthwhile building-up a H-D Model 20 from a Wagoneer.

What do you guys think?
I'm interested in hearing from anyone who has used or abused their Model 20's.
Especialy if anyone has broken one with a one piece axle installed.
Has anyone ran them hard with a V-8 and lived to tell about it?

All input would be welcome.

'85 Scrambler under construction
5.7L Vortec, NV4500, and god knows what.
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post #2 of (permalink) Old 12-09-2001, 07:12 PM
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Re: One piece AMC 20 tough enough?

i ran a locked M20 with moser shafts for a coupla years on my CJ-7 with a 330hp 350 with an auto and 35" tires. Wheeled it hard with no probs.

post #3 of (permalink) Old 12-09-2001, 07:54 PM
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Re: One piece AMC 20 tough enough?

I've been running a 20 with a Detroit Locker and Moser axles for the past 2 years in some of the toughest terrain in the country around Farmington, NM with no probs.

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post #4 of (permalink) Old 12-09-2001, 08:16 PM
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Re: One piece AMC 20 tough enough?

How hard do you wheel? Are you planning on upgrading the front axle? If you want to do it right get a d60 front and d60, 70, 14 bolt, or ford 10.5 rear axle w/ 8 lugs, they won't break w/ 35's (unless you have sh!t loads of hp and do something really stupid. The front will be much more than the rear but you could probably build a 14 bolt rear for less than a model 20, there'a full floating 14 bolt that is 63" wide (perfect width for a cj). Detroits for 14 bolts are around $350, gears and install kit $200, $100-$500 axle housing (search at the u-pull it's, especially the only mom and pop ones, the axle comes from a cab chassis 1ton chevy, something that didn't have a bed, motor homes, tow trucks, delivery vans, short buesses), $200? disc break conversion (h8 has one on his 14 bolt using a bracket and front brake parts). Now consider the cost of upgrading your stock axle or building up a waggy axle.


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post #5 of (permalink) Old 12-09-2001, 09:00 PM
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Re: One piece AMC 20 tough enough?

I've ran 33 BFG MTs and M20 w/ 1pc axles. I wheel pretty hard and haven't had any problems. I only run a 304, so it's not as much power as you have but it should be fine. Easy and cheap too. Throw in the 1pc axles, call it good, and go have fun. If it breaks, get a 14 bolt or 60. But until then I would just run the 20.

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post #6 of (permalink) Old 12-09-2001, 09:14 PM
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Re: One piece AMC 20 tough enough?

I am running mosers in a model 20(4.10) behind 350/nv4500/d300 and haven't had any problems either.

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post #7 of (permalink) Old 12-09-2001, 11:22 PM
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Re: One piece AMC 20 tough enough?

I've been running superiors in my 20 for 2 1/2 years now with no problem. Got a 350/465 combo and 35's. I rarely run any rocky trails. Mostly desert running.

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post #8 of (permalink) Old 12-09-2001, 11:28 PM
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Re: One piece AMC 20 tough enough?

I say no and here is my reason, stock drivetrain - 258,T-5,D300, 2 piece axles in the model 20. I went SOA had stock gears and no lockers but still managed to twist the axle tubes on this POS! I wasn't punching it or jumping it, just going up a ledge. The tubes and housing suck on these rearends they aren't worth spending any $$$ on. Go find at least a Dana 44 or Ford 9" to swap in.

waiting on the 1-tons!
post #9 of (permalink) Old 12-10-2001, 11:17 AM
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Re: One piece AMC 20 tough enough?

I ran 350 hp or so in my jeep with a detroit, 35x16 boggers and 4.56 gears in mine for a couple years. I am convinced that it is a solid part. I bent one of the moser shafts REALLY hammering it....but i think the 44 or 9" would have disintegrated with the same abuse..

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post #10 of (permalink) Old 12-10-2001, 11:50 AM
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Re: One piece AMC 20 tough enough?

With those upgrades, yes, it'd be up to the task. I know people running those and the D44 as well with equally good results.

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